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NFL Lockout: Why Is The Eighth Circuit Taking Their Sweet Time On Stay?

Remember ten days ago, when the U.S. Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals implemented a 'temporary' stay of Judge Nelson's complete and utter kibosh of the owners' imposed lockout on the players?

The emergency stay was granted so that the court would have enough time to discuss whether or not to grant a complete stay of the decision. It was a move harshly criticized by the one dissenting judge on the three-person judicial panel, Judge Kermit Bye [emphasis mine]:

"The NFL claimed such operations would be ‘a complex process that requires time to coordinate.’  This contention is severely undermined by the fact that the NFL had, within a day of the district court’s order denying a stay, already planned post-injunction operations which would allow the players to have access to club and workout facilities, receive playbooks, meet with coaches, and so forth.  Because I expect our court will be resolving the actual request for a stay in short order, I see little practical need for granting an emergency temporary stay in this non-emergency situation."

Well, it's been ten days. Ten days is not  resolving the actual stay in 'short order.' It's dragging one's ass. In essence, the two jokers who implemented the emergency stay did, in fact, grant the full stay. And no one can do anything about it. Not even the seemingly reasonable Judge Bye.

Andrew Brandt at National Football Post has some theories as to why the stay issue is dragging on needlessly.

Possible reasons for delay

1. Of the three judges on the Court’s panel, two are on different sides and one is on the fence vacillating.

2. It is a close call, and the judges are writing a lengthy opinion and/or dissent.

3. The Court will simply allow the temporary stay to stand. Though a possibility, I think this is very unlikely.

4. As much as we care about football, the Court has other things going on; they'll get to it when they get to it.

1. Likely, but it's still not excuse not to rule on the stay of the decision. Just letting this temporary stay 'hang' out there makes it, in essence, a permanent stay without the ruling. Such an act is cowardly, and undermines faith (what little is left) in the judicial system.

2. I certainly hope this is the case. But, again, it still offers no excuse as to why the stay hasn't been resolved.

3. Psst, they already have done this.

4. If they don't think this is important, why'd they impose a rather unprecedented emergency stay on Judge Nelson's decision?

It's so sad that the fate of football as we know it is in the hands of three old, seemingly incompetent judges who are making the justice system look even more broken and intellectually corrupt than we thought possible. But, this is what happens when overgrown children in stuffy business suits own football teams.When schmucks like Jerry Richardson are holding up hand drawn pie charts in negotiation sessions in an effort to insult players like Peyton Manning, it's kind of hard to hammer out a deal.

FYI: 2011 NFL Draft ratings were down one million viewers this year. Football is dying right before our eyes, folks.